2020's Best AR-15 Bolt Carrier Group (BCG) Reviews

OUR TOP CHOICE: Daniel Defense M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group

With everything you need from an AR-15 bolt carrier group, the Daniel Defense M16 5.56 BCG is a reliable mil-spec option that is also full-auto compatible. It offers fantastic extraction and recycling for a variety of ammunition, giving you incredibly reliable functionality

Buying an AR-15 bolt carrier group (BCG) is an investment in your shooting prowess. Finding a model that is reliable, durable, and suitable for you can greatly improve your shooting accuracy.

It’s essential that you choose an AR-15 bolt carrier group that gives you the most reliable firing performance when the trigger is pulled. You need a BCG that’s manufactured using high-quality and durable materials for reliable, semi-auto fire that lasts for years. 

Yet, there are so many to choose from. To help narrow down your options, here are some of the best AR-15 bolt carrier groups on the market.

2020's Best AR-15 Bolt Carrier Group (BCG) Reviews

Editor’s Choice: Daniel Defense M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group

With everything you need from an AR-15 bolt carrier group, the Daniel Defense M16 5.56 BCG is a reliable mil-spec option that is also full-auto compatible. It offers fantastic extraction and recycling for a variety of ammunition, giving you incredibly reliable functionality

This bolt carrier group goes into almost every Daniel Defense rifle. The 8620 steel carrier and Carpenter 158 steel bolt assembly are phosphate-coated for exceptional durability. For a BCG that’s delivered ready to use, click here

Top 7 Best AR-15 Bolt Carrier Group Reviews

Renowned for durability and high performance, Daniel Defense has some of the most respected rifles on the market. You can get some of that high performance without having to invest in an entire Daniel Defense rifle.

All Daniel Defense bolt carrier groups are magnetic particle-inspected for an imperfection-free finish. Bolts are shot-peened to enhance hardness and durability, for industry-leading BCGs that represent Daniel Defense’s reputation for providing high-quality products.

Manufactured for full-auto fire, the bolt carrier group is fitted with an extractor booster for reliable performance when in rapid-fire mode.

Featuring a Parkerized finish, which is good but could be improved, the bolt carrier is fully corrosion-resistant.

Overall, this is a high-quality, reasonably priced BCG solution for any rifle, including top of the range models. Extremely hardy, this bolt carrier group gives you your money’s worth with long-lasting reliability and performance.

Who Should Get This?

This BCG is great for rifle owners looking to benefit from the reliability, durability, and high performance of a Daniel Defense product on a budget, without having to buy an entire rifle. 

A value for money solution, the Faxon Firearms 5.56/300 Bolt Carrier Group offers excellent durability and reliable performance. The BCG is extremely durable and has superior corrosion resistance compared to typical phosphate made bolts. 

Each bolt is magnetic particle-inspected to ensure there are no defects, while bolt lugs are symmetrically sloped at a 45-degree angle to give you a reliable action every time. While lightweight, practical, and durable, the Faxon Firearms 5.56/300 BCG lacks aesthetics and could be improved to provide a better appearance. 

Overall, Faxon Firearms do have a solid reputation. Their bolt carrier groups tend to be super finished to reduce friction, reduce malfunction, and increase smooth operation. Faxon BCGs are full-auto rated and maintain the trip for full-auto fire control groups and new, multi-stage trigger systems.  

With gas keys that use grade 8 fasteners that are fully staked, you can expect a lifetime of service.

Who Should Get This?

This carrier is great for rifle owners looking for a value for money BCG that offers long-term durability and reliable action for a lifetime. Moderately priced, this is a great buy if you’re on a budget.

One of the finest examples of BCGs on the market, the Spikes Tactical M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group is made using advanced manufacturing and quality control techniques. Offering incredible reliability in semi-auto and full-auto settings, the carrier is hand-chromed internally and has an M16-type full-length shroud.

The BCG is magnetic particle-inspected to prevent flaws and maintain structural integrity. Rigorous quality control checks ensure that the Spikes Tactical M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group doesn’t fail prematurely. 

Featuring a fully staked carrier key and tool steel extractor, the BCG offers enhanced and reliable cycling. As an exquisite finishing touch, a laser-engraved Spikes Tactical logo is visible on the side of the carrier when the ejection port is opened.

Overall, this is a high-quality BCG that’s manufactured and finished to a very high standard. Available in a mil-spec, phosphate finish in matte black, this BCG not only looks great, but it also operates smoothly.

Who Should Get This?

This ideal for rifle owners looking for a high caliber, impressive BCG that is made to last and operate reliably for a lifetime. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for exceptional performance.

A top quality BCG that’s delivered fully assembled, ready to use. The Bravo Company Manufacturing M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group is made to incredibly high standards. With a Parkerized exterior for enhanced corrosion resistance and a chrome-lined inside carrier, this BCG is highly reliable and offers supreme functionality.

Every bolt is shot-peened for enhanced strength and the bolt assembly is manufactured from proper mil-spec carpenter No. 158 steel. The BCG includes a tool steel machined extractor and ejector and is high pressure-tested and magnetic particle-inspected to ensure there are no imperfections.

Bravo Company test fires all its bolt carrier groups at the factory to ensure optimum performance prior to shipping. 

Overall, this bolt carrier group represents a great upgrade compared to a standard mil-spec bolt carrier group, giving you smoother functionality and longer service life.

Made to meet military specifications, it actually exceeds mil-spec standards for the best blend of quality and value for money on the market.

Who Should Get This?

This is perfect for rifle owners looking for a bolt carrier group that meets and exceeds military-grade specifications. It’s an excellent choice if you’re looking for a mix of quality and value for money.

Made using 4 kinds of steel, the Rubber City Armory (RCA) AR-15 Low Mass 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group is designed with durability in mind. Despite its fully-loaded steel design, the bolt carrier group is very lightweight – just over 8.9 ounces to be exact. 

One of the more expensive bolt carrier groups on the market, this BCG is incredibly versatile and compatible with a wide range of ammunition and gas systems, justifying its higher price tag.

The RCA low mass BCG has been a major player on the 3-Gun scene for many years. It’s a competition carrier and its lightweight design makes a massive difference in felt recoil. The carrier comes with a Nitrided and side-staked steel billet gas key, a Nitrided 17-4 stainless steel firing pin, and a precision-machined 9310 bolt with tool steel extractor.

Manufactured for full-auto operation, the RCA AR-15 Low Mass 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group offers you an incredible blend of functionality and durability. It is an ideal solution for competitive shooters.

Who Should Get This?

This carrier is perfect for competitive shooters looking for a mix of reliability, high performance, and durability can appreciate this BCG. This option is great if you’re looking for a lightweight solution that reduces recoil.

JP Enterprises is renowned for manufacturing supreme quality AR-15 components. The JP Enterprises AR-15 5.56 Full Mass Bolt Carrier Group is arguably one of the best standard carrier groups on the market.

The entire carrier is manufactured using high-grade 9310 steel, which gives you a longer lifespan than mil-spec steel. Finished using QPQ for an ultra-hard and super smooth exterior, this BCG is designed with longevity and reduced friction in mind for exceptional functionality.

Its full weight design offers enhanced reliability for duty rifles and competition firearms, where high performance is a must. However, its full weight design provides no recoil reduction, while an increased rate of fire is also lacking.

Overall, as you’d expect from any JP Enterprises AR-15 component, their full mass bolt carrier group is in a league of its own in terms of quality. However, its price point is very high for a standard bolt group carrier.

Who Should Get This?

This is an ideal carrier if you’re looking for an AR-15 bolt carrier group component made for high-end tactical and precision rifles. It’s great if you want a solution that’s durable and highly functional.

The F-1 Firearms Durabolt 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group is currently rated one of the best available. It’s not surprising considering its fantastic price point and high quality finish. Proven to improve shooting accuracy and precision, this bolt carrier group is great for customizing your rifle to achieve better performance when shooting.

This BCG offers fantastic corrosion resistance, keeping your carrier pristine for longer with minimal wear and tear. Compatible with any mil-spec components the BCG offers you complete flexibility and is full-auto ready.

Manufactured using precision CNC machining, all F-1 Firearms Bolt Carriers are subject to performance testing prior to delivery. This ensures optimum functionality when combined with your rifle.

Easy to clean and maintain, the residue can be quickly removed without the need for intense scrubbing.

Overall, this is a great looking BCG that offers low friction operation and is extremely tough, giving you extreme reliability and long-time usage

Who Should Get This?

This is great for rifle owners looking for more accuracy and precision from their weapon. If you’re looking for a low friction solution that offers great functionality, this BCG won’t disappoint.

Best AR-15 Bolt Group Carrier Overall

For all-around performance, with a touch of style, the Daniel Defense M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group, comes in as the overall best BCG currently on the market. 

Offering full-auto capabilities, great value for money, and incredible reliability, this BCG is a solid, stable choice that can combine with any rifle and ammunition. A favorite among rifle owners, the Daniel Defense M16 5.56 Bolt Carrier Group is a trusted solution that provides long-term service.

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